10 Aug 2010
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Late afternoon today I am sitting in the Eurostar, the train which will take me from Brussels to Ashford in the UK in only two hours. The train runs at up to 300 kilometres per hour (186 mph) ! From there I take the train to Eastbourne at the South East coast of England spending a week with my friends who live there as I do each year.
For me it was a great event when on 14 November 1994 Eurostar services began between Brussels South railway station and Waterloo International station in London. My son lived in London at this time and it was so easy to go by train and not waiting hours at the airport. Since two years St. Pancras International has been chosen for the Eurostar stop in London, which I still don't understand because Waterloo station is much closer to the center and has far more correspondance possibilities. But why make it easy when you can make it complicated.
I took the train for the first time 10 days after the opening and found it very exciting to travel under the sea ! Imagine all the Ferry Boats, Cruise ships and others just swimming over your head ! Lots of people are still afraid to take this train, the idea sitting so deeply under water is scaring them. I think flying in the air is not better.
The construction of the physical tunnel began in 1988, and was finished five years later, in 1993. The Channel Tunnel used by Eurostar services holds the record for having the longest undersea section anywhere in the world, as well as being the second longest tunnel.
The Eurostar and Ashford train station
Inside the tunnel and outside and a drawing from how deep it is
these are the two main tunnels and one emergency tunnel
and when I arrive I will be here for a good week, at the see, waking up with the screams of the seagulls !